If you would like to adopt your spouse's child, you do need to be aware of the rights of the other parent. If the other parent is still living, it is likely that they will need to give consent for the adoption before you can proceed. But what if the other parent still has contact with the child? What happens to visitation rights and parenting time after an Arizona stepparent adoption?
In most cases, you will not be able to go through with a step-parent adoption in Arizona if the other parent disagrees with the adoption. If the other parent agrees, you may be able to proceed, but it can get sticky if the other parent still has visitation rights. The adoption of a stepchild in Arizona will actually negate the parental rights of the other parent, meaning that any child support or parenting time agreements in place would no longer be valid. It is possible for the adopting parents to allow for continued visitation by the other parent or grandparents, but it is not required in most places.
If you need help understanding visitation and step-parent adoption in Maricopa County, speak with one of our friendly and experienced Scottsdale family law attorneys in a completely free and confidential legal consultation. Just give us a call any time at 1-888-929-5292, and don't forget to request your free copy of our book, Arizona Family Law - How to Handle Tough Issues in Tough Times.